Thank you for your reply and for your questions. Here are my answers:
1. The blinking hourglass lasts until I restart the computer.
2. The programs that are running are usually my Thunderbird email program, and Microsoft Word.
3. When the cursor is blinking, my computer does run a little slower (but not grindingly slow). My computer also seems to be making a "thinking" or "running" noise as if I'm running a lot of programs at once or as if I'm running a virus scan with Trend Micro.
4. My hard-drive has 53.8 GB free space (out of 89.8 GB total).
5. I'm running my Windows XP firewall. I'm not sure how to check if I"m running other firewalls. Could Trend Micro be running a firewall as well?
- The hourglass runs all the time, It's never a pointer?
- I was more interested as to what processes are running in the task manager and which of the running processes were using a high CPU percentage
Have you checked to see if maybe your mouse properties haven't been changed from the default settings? Just guessing here as this is an odd situation. Click on Start>Control Panel> Change to Classic View (on left pane)>Double-Click on mouse icon. Click on pointer tab and see what the pointer is set as.
As far as firewalls go, if you don't have a hardware version or some kind of router and you haven't loaded a software version that leaves that out of the mix. I don't think that Trend Micro uses that type of function. Norton Internet Security and McAfee products use up a lot of system resources when running in the background, but you don't have them.
I would open up the task manager Ctrl+Alt+Delete and see what processes are using a lot of CPU percentage. If you see a process (outside of system idle) using a high percentage that may tell us something.
Other than that I am stumped...